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Why Disney Should Bring Back Star Wars Weekends

The food and merchandise

I’m not listing the other explanations in any particular order. I want to touch on the food next because I suspect this is part of the reason why Star Wars Weekends is on hold. Park officials canceled the event around the same time that Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge became official. In their eyes, this celebration would steal some of the thunder from the highly anticipated themed land.

Back in the day, which is to say through 2015, Star Wars-based merchandise and food were integral parts of the experience. Guests would pony up a pretty penny for gear that they couldn’t get elsewhere. In 2019, Disney has a different place that does that, Star Wars Land. They didn’t want the limited time event being perceived as the best opportunity to grab Star Wars stuff.

Perhaps you've heard about the unique items for sale at Galaxy's Edge. They've got a cantina full of alien drinks and stores that sell build-your-own droids and lightsabers, all of which are priced for the "Google stockholder" market. Similarly, you can buy fake milk for $8 every day of the week, which does make Star Wars Weekends feel a bit redundant.

Here’s where I disagree. I’m not really a Star Wars guy. Sure, I’ve seen all of the movies, even that animated debacle, but Star Wars never moved me. Star Wars Weekends, on the other hand, is a time when we planned our Disney vacations. The food and merchandise were key reasons why. I’m not worried about the latter now, as Galaxy’s Edge is overflowing with trinkets and toys.

The food, tho.

I have the fondest memories of meals at Hollywood & Vine. During Star Wars Weekends, the restaurant would host Jedi Mickey’s Star Wars Dine, an event I’ll discuss again later. What’s important right now is that the desserts for this meal were adorkable.

You could eat Darth Vader- and Stormtrooper-faced cookies. They baked R2-D2 white chocolate. Even the cupcakes and parfaits had Yoda faces and Star Wars logos on them. I could care less about Star Wars, but I loooooved those desserts. Ronto Roasters just can’t compete.

The timing

Disney executives are always phenomenal at picking the perfect dates for their limited time engagements. With Star Wars Weekends, they knew that their target demographic wouldn’t be as family-focused. Instead, many if not most of the customers would be childless adults with lots of disposable income to throw around the parks.

Star Wars Weekends were always held on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays in May and sometimes June for this reason. Kids were still in school across the country, making this kind of a dead period at the parks. The time between Spring Break and the start of summer skewed more adult, and so did Star Wars Weekends.

The May timing had an ancillary benefit. The Florida weather wasn’t as hot as during the summer. Since a lot of folks combined their love of cosplay with DisneyBounding, the more temperate climate was preferable. This aspect has changed a bit in recent years.

If I were in charge of park planning for a future Star Wars Weekend, I'd actually suggest moving it into late April, soon after Spring Break. May weather has become warmer than it was back when the event began in 1997. It's the same thought process Disney originally had for Star Wars Weekends, only adapted for changing weather patterns.

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